Tom Brady is arguably one of the greatest quarterbacks to ever play the game of football; however, Tom Brady strives continuously to improve his performance by working with a coach – namely the Patriots tight-end coach Nick Caley, who also serves as Tom Brady’s “broken-play” coach.
Banking isn’t much different than football. There are always broken-plays to adjust to, and a bank’s sales team needs to be receptive to coaching or it’s all for naught. If a seasoned veteran like Tom Brady is receptive to coaching and making small improvements, there’s no reason why bankers of any tenure shouldn’t be open to refining and honing their strategies, processes and behaviors.
To do this, leadership needs to create a coaching culture. Here are three tips to do just that:
- Put aside your ego – Banking is an industry filled with “seasoned” veterans. When someone has twenty-five years or more of experience and they’ve been successful, they often develop what I call “hardening of the attitudes” which is to say they feel like they’ve seen it all and know it all. In reality, like most other industries, banking is revolving so quickly that ego often gets in the way of helping these senior banking executives to evolve with the times. If seasoned veterans of our industry are to improve, they must put aside their ego and be willing to look at things from a different perspective.
- Developmental vs. Punitive Coaching – Depending on the contexts of a conversation, the very same conversation can come across as punitive or constructive. As a manager, if you’re focused on catching people doing things wrong and correcting their mistakes, your conversation is likely to come across as heavy-handed and micro-managing. However, if your focus is to catch employees doing things right and showing them how to refine their behaviors, the conversation is much more likely to be received as constructive. It’s all a matter of context––and your tone and approach.
- Leaders must walk-the-walk – It is imperative in any changing organization that managers at all levels lead by example. This isn’t news to anyone; however, changing behaviors can be unsettling at a minimum and downright scary to most employees. As managers, it’s imperative that employees notice you working to improve your behaviors and processes. Equally important is the communication between managers and employees. Managers must be willing to discuss with employees their own experience of change and by doing so, employees will be more willing to change their behaviors. Expressing concerns and showing some vulnerability will also enlist the buy-in of those who are looking to you for guidance.
In her article, “How to Increase Loyalty, Engagement, and Your Bottom Line,” Helen Young Hayes, a writer for Colorado Biz, and also founder and CEO of Activate Workforce Solutions, says, “Coaching not only provides a way for you to equip your employees to meet their career goals, it offers numerous benefits to your organization,” including reduced turnover; improved culture, and development of future leaders.
Hayes adds, “We know employees of all ages and positions crave more feedback and leadership development. Coaching is a way to fill that void, while increasing loyalty, engagement and potentially your bottom line. Remember that an investment in your employees is also an investment in your organization and future success.”
So, before you throw in the towel on an employee who might not be working up to par, consider coaching as an alternative to replacing.
Given the high cost of turnover, coaching is a far less costly option. Your bottom line might just be better off because of it.
To Your Success!
PS Registration for our Sales Honing Academy is now open! With rising interest rates, considerable market volatility and a looming recession, bringing in quality commercial business is likely to get tougher. The time to prepare your sales team for a recession is before the recession hits.